The other night, as we were preparing for bed, I told Avery to pick out his book for bedtime, and I read it to him. Elliot was still not finished with his bath so I told Avery to grab another book.
"Okay, mom, but I am going to read this one to you!"
When your first born reaches these milestones, your heart does a little leap for the thrill of watching them slowly master the world one step at a time. These moments become a form of validation for you and confirm that yes, you are being the type of parent your child needs you to be.
But when your baby takes these strides, your heart quivers and you weep a silent tear. These moments are no longer a thrill because you have become painfully aware that each of these baby steps leads them that much further away from you.
I want to scream out, "No, let mama read this book just one last time", but I can't. The pride and excitement on his face stops me in my tracks. This is my job. As a mother, I must accept these sweet little spirits when they are helpless and in need of a mama to sustain their precious life, and then I must nurture, encourage and teach them so that one day they will be able to do it all on their own.
So, I gave in. I allowed him to take that baby step. While drinking in the tenderness of this moment, we snuggled up close to one another, and I allowed his voice to carry me through the story. I may not always have him with me to read bedtime stories to, but, for now, he is here in my arms and I am going to enjoy it!